The X-Files #194: Human Essence

"People see you as an outsider."
ACTUAL DOCUMENTED ACCOUNT: Emma's half-sister gets her into trouble with a batch of heroin that turns people into "monsters".

REVIEW: Another Emma Hollis-centric episode, but I don't think giving her an illegitimate junky half-sister she only met two years ago is really digging into her "back story". As far as character development goes, yeah okay, bonding her and Frank in their mutual capacity for loyalty to one's friends over the Bureau. Emma is investigated for failing a drug test from just taking a cop-like taste of a heroin sample - if you can believe that, and science says you shouldn't - and is treated like a Kafka character to drum up mystery and tension. I don't call that playing fair with the audience. Just another chance for Baldwin to be slimy. Frank is the only one who takes her side even once she goes rogue and heads to Vancouver-playing-Vancouver to help her sister.

From there, it's Chinese Triads, a play on "chasing the dragon" (bungled by calling it "riding the monster", exploding fireworks factories, and brutal fights in an elevator shaft. Emma is a true badass, which I give points for, but ultimately, is this really what Millennium should be about? The super-soldier drug mixed into the heroin by a chemist who is apparently being protected by the U.S. government - a conspiracy that yields no answers, not surprisingly, but really no questions, which just makes the story vague and unsatisfying - would feel more at home on The X-Files, despite a major (and as we'll find out, erroneous) clue that the parent program is fictional in Millennium. See, there's a scene where you hear The X-Files playing on television through a door. It goes on for a bit. Very recognizable as "Kill Switch". And where we should be focusing on the human interest story, we're distracted. And it highlights the fact that Frank acts like a veritable Mulder here, jumping to conclusions and believing any old sci-fi hogwash he comes up with.

Thing is, unless the super-heroin that turns people in Mr. Hyde is part of the Millennium Group's agenda, making them responsible for covering up the incident and forcing internal affairs to drop the investigation into Emma, this story really doesn't belong in the canon. Just a piece of paranoid fiction that won't be referenced again, if I had my guess.

REWATCHABILITY: Medium - Rogue Emma is pretty cool, but the story doesn't seem to fit the world of Millennium.



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